It could be that because I am getting excited for Multicultural Children’s Book Day: Celebrating Diversity in Children’s Literature on January 27th 2014 , I really got excited about the Marisol McDonald picture book series.
I grew up in Southern California but have been living outside Boston for the past 15 years. When I went to a friend’s birthday party in Southern California a decade ago — I kid you not — EVERY single child at that party of two dozen was of mixed race. That’s California for you!
My own kids are multi-racial Asians that we refer to in Hawaiian slang as a “Mixed Plate” in that they are 1/4 Japanese, 1/4 Chinese and 1/2 Korean. And American too, of course, because they were all born in Boston.
In the first picture book, Marisol doesn’t match because she has red hair and nut-brown skin. She likes peanut butter and jelly but nestled in a burrito. I’m glad these multi-racial messages are finally making it in picture book land because this kind of mixed up culture is very normal to me.
My name is Marison McDonald, and I don’t match because … I don’t want to!
I like being unique, different, and one of a kind.
Marisol McDonald Doesn’t Match by Monica Brown, illustrated by Sara Palacios
In this second picture book — also bilingual in Spanish — Marisol is trying to plan her perfect birthday party. Her greatest birthday desire is for her beloved abuelita to come to her party all the way from Peru. That’s a very expensive wish, even with Marisol saving up! There’s a high tech surprise ending!
Marisol McDonald and the Clash Bash by Monica Brown, illustrated by Sara Palacios
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